PDA

View Full Version : Not being able to finish cleanups before dark


mowerdude777
09-21-2010, 10:02 PM
Has anyone else (who's still in school) had this issue, pretty much since the 2008 season I have had this issue, where I get off of school and have to get out and bust hump to get done before dark. I have most of my accounts scheduled on the same days (4 days) and I always was finishing in the dark in 2008. 2009 comes and I have my Friend help me we moved FAST but still not good enough (I did have more work that year) This year I have even more then last and plan on having another friend who is LCO as well but I still have a feeling that we will not be done in time. Here's the most efficient plan I have come up with,
One person will be blowing at all times
One will mow up at the leaves
will assist the blower and mower operators with the other mower and blower as well as load up the trailer with leaves
Will this be fast enough where I can be done in time (typically 3 yards a day and we start at 330 and end at 7:30 Thanks- Ryan

ajslands
09-21-2010, 10:05 PM
I hear ya, I'm still I. High school and some jobs take me 3 days!
Posted via Mobile Device

mowerdude777
09-21-2010, 10:11 PM
QUOTE=ajslands;3728736]I hear ya, I'm still I. High school and some jobs take me 3 days!
Posted via Mobile Device[/QUOTE]

Yeah thats another key reason why I shcedual the way I do so I dont get frigged over and have to work a huge job then the reg lawns too I schedual my fall so I get 3 days off a week for weather (never know what will happen in michigan:dizzy:) do I always gotta have time for if one day it snows then the next its freaking 70 LOL

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-22-2010, 01:15 AM
Im in college. I doubt i am in school as long as you guys but when i do leaves. I have around 60 properties to maintain and clean up leaves. Buy a mulch kit for one of your mowers and this is my advice and how to do leaves

Steps:
1. everyone blow the leaves into the yard(from the beds)
2. one person on the mulch mower and one person on the finish mower, Mowing right behind the mulch mower bagging the left over small clippings
3.third guy, or finish mower guy loads up the fine mulched up leaves on the trailer and
4. once backyard is done(15 min or less with the small properties) start on front yard and do the exact same thing.

This will make you more productive and have to take away half the clippings so instead of 3 a day you can fit 6 a day into your route and not have to dump the leaves.

You definitly can do this with 2 guys no problem. I live nearly 2 miles away from you, althought i have much bigger equipment and 1/4 -3 acre properties. It should still be generally the same idea. What i do is i have two people working for me. The blow out front yard beds first. Then i suck them all up with my qds ultravac bagger. Then dump them into the street. As i am mowing the front leaves up, they are blowing the back yard beds out. After i am done with front, i mow backyard leaves up while they trim edge and clean up grass clippings and sidewalks and street. Once im done dumping the clippings into the street or driveway. They use the leaf loader and suck the mulched up pile of leaves again and mulch them even finer.

The small lawns can be done in less than 25 minutes. Practically a mowing but a little more clean up. And the big lawns take a little more time but depend on the amount of trees in the property and how big it is. I could do a full clean up to a one acre property in about an hour to an hour and a half.

Southern Pride
09-22-2010, 05:24 AM
It's not really an issue though. I mean ideally you get some guys that could do all of this while you were in class (I stress ideally) but reschedule your classes at night next semester? As long as you finish its ok, but yeah pretty straight forward solution there.

mowerdude777
09-22-2010, 05:35 PM
Im in college. I doubt i am in school as long as you guys but when i do leaves. I have around 60 properties to maintain and clean up leaves. Buy a mulch kit for one of your mowers and this is my advice and how to do leaves

Steps:
1. everyone blow the leaves into the yard(from the beds)
2. one person on the mulch mower and one person on the finish mower, Mowing right behind the mulch mower bagging the left over small clippings
3.third guy, or finish mower guy loads up the fine mulched up leaves on the trailer and
4. once backyard is done(15 min or less with the small properties) start on front yard and do the exact same thing.

This will make you more productive and have to take away half the clippings so instead of 3 a day you can fit 6 a day into your route and not have to dump the leaves.

You definitly can do this with 2 guys no problem. I live nearly 2 miles away from you, althought i have much bigger equipment and 1/4 -3 acre properties. It should still be generally the same idea. What i do is i have two people working for me. The blow out front yard beds first. Then i suck them all up with my qds ultravac bagger. Then dump them into the street. As i am mowing the front leaves up, they are blowing the back yard beds out. After i am done with front, i mow backyard leaves up while they trim edge and clean up grass clippings and sidewalks and street. Once im done dumping the clippings into the street or driveway. They use the leaf loader and suck the mulched up pile of leaves again and mulch them even finer.

The small lawns can be done in less than 25 minutes. Practically a mowing but a little more clean up. And the big lawns take a little more time but depend on the amount of trees in the property and how big it is. I could do a full clean up to a one acre property in about an hour to an hour and a half.

That sounds like it would work, I sometimes side discharge then go back with the bag which saves time but I have a few accounts that pretty much are trees (one is so bad that the excessive amounts of leaves kept stopping the exmark!)

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-22-2010, 07:13 PM
It's not really an issue though. I mean ideally you get some guys that could do all of this while you were in class (I stress ideally) but reschedule your classes at night next semester? As long as you finish its ok, but yeah pretty straight forward solution there.

I have classes at night, but i was in highschool last year dealing with this also. I get that im in college but it doesnt hurt to give another local kid some advice.

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-22-2010, 07:17 PM
That sounds like it would work, I sometimes side discharge then go back with the bag which saves time but I have a few accounts that pretty much are trees (one is so bad that the excessive amounts of leaves kept stopping the exmark!)

In the excessive walnut tree leaves and those huge leaves that we get in our area, what i usually do is raise my mower deck.I havent had a problem of bogging down my lazer or viking, but if you do have that problem, i would either go slower with the deck like snails pace, or raise the deck.

How big are the properties that you are servicing? Like bigger than a half acre?

mowerbrad
09-22-2010, 07:54 PM
Do what I did, install lights on your mower and lights on your trailer. I even have a large remote controlled spot/flood light that I can mount on my truck to add a little extra light. That way you can finish your work even when it gets dark. And soon it will start getting dark by 6:30 or earlier.

If you have enough lights (like I will soon have) you'll be saying "Dark?...there is no such thing as dark".

georgiagrass
09-22-2010, 08:29 PM
Im in college. I doubt i am in school as long as you guys but when i do leaves. I have around 60 properties to maintain and clean up leaves. Buy a mulch kit for one of your mowers and this is my advice and how to do leaves

Steps:
1. everyone blow the leaves into the yard(from the beds)
2. one person on the mulch mower and one person on the finish mower, Mowing right behind the mulch mower bagging the left over small clippings
3.third guy, or finish mower guy loads up the fine mulched up leaves on the trailer and
4. once backyard is done(15 min or less with the small properties) start on front yard and do the exact same thing.

This will make you more productive and have to take away half the clippings so instead of 3 a day you can fit 6 a day into your route and not have to dump the leaves.

You definitly can do this with 2 guys no problem. I live nearly 2 miles away from you, althought i have much bigger equipment and 1/4 -3 acre properties. It should still be generally the same idea. What i do is i have two people working for me. The blow out front yard beds first. Then i suck them all up with my qds ultravac bagger. Then dump them into the street. As i am mowing the front leaves up, they are blowing the back yard beds out. After i am done with front, i mow backyard leaves up while they trim edge and clean up grass clippings and sidewalks and street. Once im done dumping the clippings into the street or driveway. They use the leaf loader and suck the mulched up pile of leaves again and mulch them even finer.

The small lawns can be done in less than 25 minutes. Practically a mowing but a little more clean up. And the big lawns take a little more time but depend on the amount of trees in the property and how big it is. I could do a full clean up to a one acre property in about an hour to an hour and a half.

... or you could just get a Walker.

STIHL GUY
09-22-2010, 11:21 PM
mount floodlights on your mower or truck...i just get everyting into piles before dark...it doesnt matter how dark it is with the flood lights i can suck the piles and see fine

mowerdude777
09-22-2010, 11:36 PM
In the excessive walnut tree leaves and those huge leaves that we get in our area, what i usually do is raise my mower deck.I havent had a problem of bogging down my lazer or viking, but if you do have that problem, i would either go slower with the deck like snails pace, or raise the deck.

How big are the properties that you are servicing? Like bigger than a half acre?

Mainly .25 of an acre 2 are .50 and one .75 (both the 50s are on the same street and have MASSIVE amounts of leaves) I have tried going in first gear and still, I may just blow tha majorty out to the street then bag the rest though

mowerdude777
09-22-2010, 11:47 PM
... or you could just get a Walker.

Walkers are a rare sighting here:cry: no dealers plus they are so expensive but one day I would LOVE to have one

mowerdude777
09-22-2010, 11:50 PM
Do what I did, install lights on your mower and lights on your trailer. I even have a large remote controlled spot/flood light that I can mount on my truck to add a little extra light. That way you can finish your work even when it gets dark. And soon it will start getting dark by 6:30 or earlier.

If you have enough lights (like I will soon have) you'll be saying "Dark?...there is no such thing as dark".

That is a genius idea, I think I should do that could you give me a tough idea of the cost for everything that I will need

mowerdude777
09-22-2010, 11:52 PM
mount floodlights on your mower or truck...i just get everyting into piles before dark...it doesnt matter how dark it is with the flood lights i can suck the piles and see fine

Yeah I have to load them on the trailer still (will have a truck and leaf box next year though. But I can see well in the dark (I have 20/20 vision) but my helpers are not as good, usually have bright green coats on so we can see each other when it is REALLY dark

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 12:41 AM
What i might do this year and i really wanted to do it last year but never got around to it. Is to put a battery on my trailer with halogen lights hooded up to it around 350w of lights. like 7, 50w and light up the yard. I was going to use a trickle wire to charge the battery from my truck or just have a jump kit.

Or just get a small generator for like 200 dollar and plug in like 2 big lights to light everything up for you. Then it will give you enough light to work as late as you want.

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 12:42 AM
We do not have "clean-ups" here. Sorry can't help.

The only thing I can offer is to think about every step you take. Maximize your efficiency. For instance when I blow as soon I get that blower running it is running full blast all the way back to rack. I have helpers that idle all the way to the back of the driveway and then take for ever to come down the driveway. Whereas I start blowing walking up the driveway and then on the way back down it is a lot less to blow.

So in summary, whenever you work be sure every action you do has the maximum effect.

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 12:43 AM
wow, i didnt realize it was already said. But definitly do it. I feel stupid now for repeating what the guy above said.
haha
Lights on your mower are hard because a bike light isnt big enough, you could get those head lamp you can put on your head and strap like 3 or 4 all directions on your mower. But a walk behind doesnt have an alternator so there is not power coming from the engine if im not mistaken. With my lazer i have a light kit for it but the lights are in the worst location and always get hit by tree branches

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 12:44 AM
Yeah I have to load them on the trailer still (will have a truck and leaf box next year though. But I can see well in the dark (I have 20/20 vision) but my helpers are not as good, usually have bright green coats on so we can see each other when it is REALLY dark

Go get it hustler! Get you some mower headlights, I bought a kit for my big ZTR and there is no looking back. I believe it was like 100.00. Knowing you though, I am sure you could get something just as good for 25.00:rolleyes:

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 12:45 AM
... or you could just get a Walker.

around my area walkers are unheard of. I have seen them in the thumb area sparcley but there isn't any big dealer support for those mowers. Besides the POS exmark navigator. I don't like the look of the middle wheel in my stripes. ITs not my thing i guess but the functionalty oft he walker mower is unheard of. I would love it if it didn't have a rear single wheel

ajslands
09-23-2010, 12:56 AM
That is a genius idea, I think I should do that could you give me a tough idea of the cost for everything that I will need

The remote light is like 265$ plus 75 if you want the magnetic mount.
As for the flood lights, those can get expensive too! The nice 12 led ones are expensive too but they are bright.
Posted via Mobile Device

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 01:00 AM
The remote light is like 265$ plus 75 if you want the magnetic mount.
As for the flood lights, those can get expensive too! The nice 12 led ones are expensive too but they are bright.
Posted via Mobile Device

LEDs IMO are not worth it. They short out to easily and are waaay too expensive.

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 01:02 AM
if your going to spend 300 dollars + dont bother with a bunch of tiny stuff. Get a good sized 250 dollar generator and wire two 150w flood lights to the tongue of your trailer. on a 2x4 or something. I honestly can help you if you need it.

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 01:05 AM
if your going to spend 300 dollars + dont bother with a bunch of tiny stuff. Get a good sized 250 dollar generator and wire two 150w flood lights to the tongue of your trailer. on a 2x4 or something. I honestly can help you if you need it.

Yea, while your keeping the neighborhood awake you might as well do it in style.:laugh:

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 01:07 AM
http://www.homedepot.com/Outdoors-Outdoor-Power-Equipment-Generators-Portable-Generators/h_d1/N-5yc1vZ1xi0Zar7k/R-100637533/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053


and the lights

http://www.homedepot.com/Lighting-Fans-Security-Emergency-Lighting-Security-Lighting-Spot-Flood-Lights/h_d1/N-5yc1vZ1xi0Zaqp5/R-100652891/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053


Get 6 lights. 20 feet of wire, and build a big side to your trailer. Mount the lights all along your trailer and turn on the generator. If you wanted you could put 6 more lights on the other side too or run an extension cord to the back yard and set up a little light system too.

For under 300 dollars you have day light , in the night. With one light it will be bright. If you got 6 lights it would be like a sports field lit up.

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 01:18 AM
http://www.homedepot.com/Outdoors-Outdoor-Power-Equipment-Generators-Portable-Generators/h_d1/N-5yc1vZ1xi0Zar7k/R-100637533/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053


and the lights

http://www.homedepot.com/Lighting-Fans-Security-Emergency-Lighting-Security-Lighting-Spot-Flood-Lights/h_d1/N-5yc1vZ1xi0Zaqp5/R-100652891/h_d2/ProductDisplay?langId=-1&storeId=10051&catalogId=10053


Get 6 lights. 20 feet of wire, and build a big side to your trailer. Mount the lights all along your trailer and turn on the generator. If you wanted you could put 6 more lights on the other side too or run an extension cord to the back yard and set up a little light system too.

For under 300 dollars you have day light , in the night. With one light it will be bright. If you got 6 lights it would be like a sports field lit up.

Yea, you can probably find a cheaper generator on CL.

I used to be an electrician's helper, one thing about those halogens are that the bulbs will break easy. So they got to ride up front with the executives are they will break and the bulbs are not cheap.

Good idea to wire those light fixtures though is to go to Lowes and get a pigtail and just wire it in.

DLONGLANDSCAPING
09-23-2010, 01:22 AM
i didnt even think about all the bumps those lights would be taking on the road driving. I know the light bulbs are around 4-6 dollars each. But what is 4-6 dollars when you can do another 3 clean ups in a day at around 250 each clean up. I think someone could afford the extra light bulbs when they are making an extra 750 dollars.

Wiring it to a pigtail would be ideal but its not like a generator will be louder than a ebz8001 or a mower. Haha engines will always be sooo loud either way.

LouisianaLawnboy
09-23-2010, 01:28 AM
i didnt even think about all the bumps those lights would be taking on the road driving. I know the light bulbs are around 4-6 dollars each. But what is 4-6 dollars when you can do another 3 clean ups in a day at around 250 each clean up. I think someone could afford the extra light bulbs when they are making an extra 750 dollars.

Wiring it to a pigtail would be ideal but its not like a generator will be louder than a ebz8001 or a mower. Haha engines will always be sooo loud either way.

Hey, I thought of something. Maybe you could piggyback on your battery. You would have to see how much your pulling on those lights and what your vehicle is rated for.

A few alligator clips and your ready to go.

mowerbrad
09-23-2010, 10:37 AM
That is a genius idea, I think I should do that could you give me a tough idea of the cost for everything that I will need

For the mower, you're probably looking at $100 or less in supplies (depending on how many lights you buy and what type). When I ordered my Deere I also ordered the light kit for it, which was installed by the dealer. Just the lights on the mower will light up an area really well.

If you want to put lights on the trailer, you can mount a battery on the trailer and run the lights directly off the battery. Then just let the battery charge when it's hooked up to the truck.

You can get flood lights from northern tool for $19.99 each, then just get the wires and switch and get it all wired up.

peahlybros.
09-26-2010, 05:02 PM
I often work in the dark, or am at least emptying the leaves out of the truck and trailer in the dark. What I do is set up a bunch of spot lights all around the leaf box on the truck that are wired to switches in the cab. I have a switch for the lights on the left side, a switch for the right side, a switch for the back and a switch for the inside. I also have lights on my trailer so I can see whats behind me when backing up in the dark. The reason I wire my lights this way is so that If im just vacuuming from the back of the truck I can just put the back lights on and am not shining lights at other people houses and stuff. Also if im vacuuming leaves curb-side I can turn on just that side's lights and am not shinning spotlights at traffic.

Seems to work pretty good for me
It just sucks to run the wiring every year when I set up the box

Trevor8
09-26-2010, 10:22 PM
If your customers don't mind work saturday or sunday.

chris@perfectlawncare
10-01-2010, 09:36 PM
For those who don't want a third wheel or a walker, grasshopper (i think) makes a model with a double rear wheel and a clamshell bagger.

joef450snowplow
10-05-2010, 07:40 PM
That sounds like it would work, I sometimes side discharge then go back with the bag which saves time but I have a few accounts that pretty much are trees (one is so bad that the excessive amounts of leaves kept stopping the exmark!)

get a cheap ground blower like troy built it will save u alot of time with alot of leafs or if u got the money get a good commercial one i also had that problem so i just put a light bar from my friends old roll bar from his truck n hooked it up to a car battery so that i could see in the dark

mowerdude777
10-05-2010, 07:45 PM
get a cheap ground blower like troy built it will save u alot of time with alot of leafs or if u got the money get a good commercial one i also had that problem so i just put a light bar from my friends old roll bar from his truck n hooked it up to a car battery so that i could see in the dark

Yeah, that could work, but I dont really want a WB blower since I allready got a new bp blower this year

joef450snowplow
10-05-2010, 07:58 PM
oh haha well then you need to hustle or do more of your work on weekends start at 7 n go all the way to 630 7

mowerdude777
10-05-2010, 09:46 PM
oh haha well then you need to hustle or do more of your work on weekends start at 7 n go all the way to 630 7

Yeah 80% of my work is on THursdays and Fridays so I am just moving up everyone a day so I can do my Thursday and not have to think about getting ready for school the next day and the friday (where most is) Will work GREAT with saturday (which has one acct bi weekly allready)

joef450snowplow
10-05-2010, 10:03 PM
there ya go that should work out